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Day 1 of the 2021 League of Legends World Championship group stage featured a ton of one-sided games, but there were still was plenty of exciting moments to make it memorable. From a Yuumi first picks to the endless battle for relevancy between EU and NA, here is a wrap-up of all the best moments of the day at Worlds 2021.

Player of the day: HLE Chovy

With Fnatic’s bot laner, Elias “Upset” Lipp, unable to play due to an urgent family matter, Hanwha Life Esports knew they would be playing against a rookie not only making his Worlds debut, but also his big league debut. Unfortunately for him and Fnatic, HLE’s superstar mid-laner, Jeong “Chovy” Ji-hoon played the same way he always does. Instead of picking one of the meta picks we have seen at Worlds, Chovy flexed his mechanical prowess by locking in the solo queue menace, Yasuo.

Behind Chovy, HLE made quick work of Fnatic, and Chovy’s Yasuo was at the center of it all.

Most memorable moment: Team Liquid beat MAD Lions

Heading into Worlds 2021, the EU vs NA rivalry was at its weakest point in some time. With MAD Lions looked like a top-five team in the World before the tournament, North America barely cracked the top 10.

Despite the supposed gap, NA hopium was in full effect going into the first match between the two regions at Worlds. Team Liquid came into their Group D match against MAD Lions as heavy underdogs. Few expected TL to win this match, and many figured they would lose to everyone else in the group. But when people count NA out, that’s when they are the most dangerous.

Team Liquid pulled off the only major upset on the first day of the group stage and made it look clean, single-handedly reviving the NA vs EU rivalry and giving all NA fans hope going into the rest of the event.

Best quote: Sjokz’ take on Yuumi

The opening match between DWG KIA and FunPlus Phoenix may have also been a Worlds finals preview, but the result wasn’t the most talked-about part of the game. Instead, the out of nowhere Yuumi support pick that sent Twitter into a frenzy took over the conversation. But more than anyone, host Eefje “sjokz” Depoortere summed up the community’s feelings in a single, succinct tweet.

Best clip: EDG’s JieJie makes it look so easy on Lee Sin

Lee Sin is a pick that allows any competent jungler to showcase their insane Insec plays, and EDG’s Zhao “Jiejie” Li-Jie showed one of the cleanest flash kicks we have seen in recent memory. With bot lane at a standstill, JieJie did what he had to do to turn the needle into EDG’s favor. EDG went on to win this game handily after the sick play.

What’s Next?

All 16 group stage teams will be back on the rift tomorrow, as some of the exciting matches during Day 7 of Worlds include the highly anticipated match-up between Edward Gaming’s Lee “Scout”  Ye-chan vs T1’s Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok. In fact, that match kicks off the action, which starts at 7 a.m. ET.

ASU alum with a B.A in Sports Journalism, Warren is one of the premier TFT Journalists in the scene and is a decent TFT player as well who has peaked Challenger and has had multiple accounts in Master+ over all sets. Warren also specializes in other esports content including League of Legends, Valorant, Smash Bros, and more.
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